Addis Ababa literally means “new flower”: for more than 20 years, Chinese urbanists, architects, politicians and entrepreneurs have been shaping the capital city of Ethiopia. While building the highest building, the first light railway trail, and the first Chinese Economic Zone in Eastern Africa, how do local Ethiopian citizens and professionals react to this development? These infrastructure projects are mostly built by Chinese companies, funded by Chinese banks and constructed by Chinese labour. The film is a personal stroll through the city of Addis Ababa and is looking at Chinese physical and cultural interventions and the question on how society is being affected.
Budapest150: How to counter the influence of main geopolitical actors on the local cityscape?
ABOUT THE DIRECTOR
Silvan Hagenbrock (1991, Dortmund) is an urbanist, filmmaker and editor. He studies M.A. social design arts as urban innovation at the University of Applied Arts Vienna. Furthermore, he is also a curator of the program Citymakers China – Germany, initiated by Robert Bosch Stiftung. After his two years stay in China, Hagenbrock applied film as a method in urban studies at Bauhaus-Universität Weimar, researching his Bachelor-Thesis: Chinese Urbanism in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and produced a documentary film. He lives and works between Vienna and Berlin.
His other film in a previous festival edition is This Is Pan Tao.